REC Solar and DHX finalize solar microgrid project in Hawaii


Dependable Hawaiian Express (DHX) and REC Solar, an unregulated affiliate of Duke Energy, have completed a solar microgrid solution for a Hawaiian-based freight company.

 The solar microgrid solution is designed to bring reliability, savings and zero-emissions generation to the company.

“When your company’ first name is ‘dependable’, you better have a power system that is too. Still, my commitment to going green isn’t just about reliable energy and saving money. I have a granddaughter who is 7, and it’s as much about saving the planet for her future. The key for me was finding the right expert.”

DHX president Brad Dechter.

“DHX wanted an emissions-free solution that would complement their commitment to customer service and ensure business continuity – even during a power outage. Providing innovative, resilient, clean energy solutions to our customers is what we do best.”

Dan Alcombright, senior vice president of REC Solar.

REC Solar designed, engineered and installed 360 solar panels on the 76,000-square-foot (7,061 square meters) roof of DHX’s new warehouse and distribution center in Honolulu. Located on one side of the roof, the 133-kW solar photovoltaic (PV) system eliminates 152 metric tons of CO2 emissions annually.

The solar generation is combined with 222 kWh of battery energy storage, a microgrid controller and other equipment. The result is a zero-emissions energy system that protects DHX’s sensitive electronic equipment and provides up to four hours of backup power during outages. T

“Avoiding costs from damaged computers, servers and other equipment could in itself pay for the system. And using the energy we produce on-site is a great way to shift load, reduce my peak usage and lower year-round demand charges. That cuts costs year-round.

“I like the package REC put together as it allows us flexibility and coverage we need at the best value. And the solar panels on the roof spell out DHX – a great way to promote our business to those traveling by plane or helicopter over the shipping and warehouse districts.”


With the first phase of the project completed, the next phase includes the installation of more solar on the alternate side of the roof. The additional clean energy will provide electric vehicle charging capacity for the company’s planned transition to electric vehicles (EV) in the future.

Anela Dokso

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